Good afternoon, chancellor, vice chancellor, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, and truly an exceptional group of fellow graduates!!! Today is a day for us to celebrate the hard work we’ve put in over the past few years and we are proud to say that we are here and we made it!!!
I’m sure all of you would agree that the road to this point hasn’t been an easy one. We came from different places, different countries, and different language backgrounds. Yet, we all made the same decision to come to ANU to pursue the best education and the brightest future. Each of us would have a unique story to share and a different set of memories that’s worth cherishing for a lifetime. For me, the story goes like this.
About five years ago back in China, I had this bold idea to study abroad. I wanted to be in a new environment to challenge myself and to create an adventure. With my parents’ strong support and encouragement, I transferred to an international high school and then later get accepted into ANU. And here’s something I’ve learnt from it, the bigger the challenge, the greater the reward, at ANU, I received the best education I could hope for. I began to take an interest in renewable energy Engineering and turn it into a dream I will have for life. I was surrounded by amazing people that inspire me everyday and I made great friends- like you all.
This experience has transformed me and I’m sure it would be the same for all of you. We all remember writing up pages of computer programs with our blurry eyes, deriving mathematical equations that’s longer than the widths of our notebooks, or pulling all-nighters with the project groups with special shared meals of alternating value pizza and maccas. It is this education that sharpened our skills as we were pushed to the limits. It is this education that taught us if you know where you want to go, the world will conspire to help you, and there is no limits to what you can do. And above all, it is this education that brought us together. We are all constantly growing and learning and no where can you find a better group of peers to share this journey with.
When we look back- on the past few years, we can’t help but noticed this, without the support and guidance from our families, our friends, our professors, we would never have made it this far. And today I’m honored for this opportunity, on behalf of all the graduates, to express- this gratitude. For the relentless support, for the unconditional love, for setting high standards and for believing what we could achieve, for the warm hugs, the proud tears and for being with us on our graduation day. Families, friends and professors, from all of us to all of you, THANK YOU.
Before I end this speech I want to share with you something that inspires me for a long time. In my favorite book, Oliver Wendell Holmes once said, when the race is over, there is a short stop to hear the kind voice of friends, but the work never is done while you still live. And to live is to function. We graduates today are the lucky recipients of an exceptional education, and we should feel that debt to society. We should become interested and involved in the world around us, and by virtue of our education, we can and will make a difference. Tomorrow as we embark on a new path in our lives, there will be so many more adventures to come. Graduates of 2016, congratulations and best of luck for the future!! Thank you!!